This marble-topped library-table is embellished with French-fashioned inlay, and designed in the early 19th century 'Grecian' style with stepped cornice, plinth-supported trestles and reeded black ornament. Apollo as poetry-deity is evoked by its palm-flowered tablets, while Grecian-fretted ribbons wrap the plinths of the scrolled and paterae-enriched trestles.
Its design and ornament largely derive from a table pattern in Thomas Hope's, Household Furniture and Interior Decoration, 1807, (figs. 1 and 2, pl. XXII), and it also relates to the ebony-inlaid Grecian furniture of George Bullock (d. 1818), whose manufactures were discussed in Rudolph Ackermann's Repository of Arts. In 1814 Ackermann illustrated a pattern for a breakfast sofa-table with similar reeded and Grecian-black stretcher-tie. He also reported that in contemporary taste 'we now universally quit the overcharged magnificence of former ages, and seek the purer model of simplicity and tasteful ornament'. (P. Agius, Ackermann's Regency Furniture and Interiors, London, pl. 63). Amongst the leading craftsman working in this fashion was the cabinet-maker George Oakley, who supplied a bookcase of ebony-inlaid mahogany for Papworth Hall, Cambridgeshire in 1810 (F. Collard, Regency Furniture, Woodbridge, 1985, p. 107).